13 Apr 2013

Youths Earn Awards for Contributing to Work, World & Life-Ready Community

-nEbO members start L.O.V.E. movement to raise funds for beneficiaries of Singapore Red Cross Society and Family Life Centre

-New Work-Ready programmes in 2013 for members for to gain a better understanding of future work and career expectations

1. nEbO, the junior membership arm of the National Trades Union Congress (NTUC) held its annual Spirit of Youth Awards on 13 April 2013 to recognise the contributions of its various youth members in the community. Attended by Guest-of-Honour NTUC Secretary-General Lim Swee Say, he praised the youth community for its success in engaging its members meaningfully, nurturing and supporting active, responsible youths who contribute to society.

2. 12 awards were presented to five teams and seven individuals in the following award categories: Team of Versatility, Inspiration of Tomorrow, Blaze of Passion, Strength of Unity, Initiative of Extraordinaire, Excel, Special Commendation and Alumni awards. The nominees were selected based on their efforts in initiating, organising and leading events and projects for other members, that contributes to nEbO’s aims in getting youths Work, World and Life-Ready. (Refer to the annex for full list of winners and details.)

3. One of the recipients which embodies nEbO’s Life-Ready aim – to nurture youths who initiate action for social change, is the Living On the Very Edge (L.O.V.E.) committee. The project aims to raise funds for the Singapore Red Cross Society and Family Life Centre by selling orange wristbands at $2 each as a fund-raising item. It also encourages youths and the public to spare a thought and care for the less fortunate.

4. Ms Kelly Cheng, 21 years old, chairperson of the L.O.V.E. committee which received the Initiative of Extraordinaire award said, “All 11 of us in the committee are from different schools and we got to know each other through past nEbO events. We realised we are all motivated by the same passion to help the less fortunate and decided to start this L.O.V.E. movement to raise funds. I am grateful for the recognition for the hard work we have put in the past seven months, and will continue to work hard to achieve our target of selling 60,000 wristbands.”

5. The fundraising efforts by the L.O.V.E. committee will continue in 2013, to help fund the second phase of their movement. It aims to get more youths involved beyond monetary donations and ad hoc activities. Youths will be engaged on a long-term basis by starting programmes and activities that will benefit the elderly, children and lower-income.

6. Another notable winner is the PIXELS 2012 committee which picked up the award for Team of Versatility. Initiated by members of nEbO’s Photography Interest Group, they organised a two-day photography symposium - nEbO’s first ever, for youths interested in photography as a career. Participants got to learn about breaking into the industry and the challenges faced from professional photographers, while picking up tips to improve their skills and techniques. “Organising an event like PIXELS for the first time was a daunting task, but we are very glad to be given the opportunity and we feel honoured to be recognised for our efforts. Through the event, we wanted to encourage youths with a common interest in photography to dare to pursue their dreams of turning their passion into a career,” said Ms Chua Cai Bei, chairperson of PIXELS 2012 committee.

7. In line with nEbO’s Work-Ready aims and following good feedback from the participants, PIXELS will be organised for a second time in the later half of 2013. Continuing its current Work Attachment Programme for secondary school students, Youth Entrepreneurship Symposium for tertiary students and Learning Journeys to visit actual companies and organisation work sites, nEbO also intends to launch two new Work-Ready initiatives to prepare youths for entering the workforce and to encourage learning beyond the classroom.

8. nEbO Voices, a series of three dialogue sessions for members to discuss and voice their opinions with the Labour Movement on youth-related issues and topics will be held. For the first scheduled in May, the objective is to allow youths to gain a better, realistic understanding of working life through dialogue with union leaders, management, and human resource personnel. The needs and perspectives of youths with regards to their expectations about their future careers will be identified and addressed.

9. An Industrial Exposure Week seminar is also planned for November 2013. Focusing on the hospitality industry this round, the aim is for youths to gain more knowledge about the industry and clarify their expectations to ease their transition to the workforce after they graduate. It is also targeted at secondary school students so that they can make an informed choice when selecting courses in the tertiary institutions.

10. “As a community for the youth, by the youth, our members play an important role in our success. Hence the awards serve to acknowledge the efforts of our youths, motivate those who have done well and create role models to encourage others. As they continue to grow with us and serve the community, we want to develop their potential and successfully groom future leaders who contribute back to society. Some of our youths have really grown with us, moving from being just participants to activists and mentors to the younger members, even after they have become full-fledged NTUC members,” said Mr Lim Eng Lee, NTUC Alignment Director (nEbO).

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